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Stringer, Facing Sexual Harassment Accusation, Loses Key Endorsements

A number of of New York’s main left-wing lawmakers and the New York chapter of the Working Households Social gathering pulled their help for Scott M. Stringer’s mayoral campaign on Friday following an allegation of sexual misconduct.

The withdrawal of the endorsements dealt seismic blows to Mr. Stringer, and considerably sophisticated his path ahead within the mayor’s race in New York Metropolis.

Consultant Jamaal Bowman, a New York Democrat; State Senators Alessandra Biaggi, Julia Salazar and Gustavo Rivera and Assemblywomen Yuh-Line Niou and Catalina Cruz — lots of whom had been at Mr. Stringer’s marketing campaign announcement and had served as distinguished surrogates for his mayoral bid — issued a joint assertion.

“We’re rescinding our endorsement of Scott Stringer’s mayoral marketing campaign,” it mentioned merely.

Mr. Stringer, the town comptroller, has sought to be the left-wing standard-bearer within the high-stakes mayoral contest, and he had gained momentum in latest weeks, partly due to the backing of the Working Households Social gathering, which his allies had seen as a turning level within the race. However the sexual misconduct accusation from a former campaign worker, which got here to gentle this week, has sparked an outcry, putting mounting political stress on the candidate, who has vigorously denied wrongdoing.

The lady, Jean Kim, now a political lobbyist, accused Mr. Stringer of sexually assaulting her when she labored on his 2001 race for public advocate. She mentioned that Mr. Stringer, who was then a state assemblyman, had groped her, made different undesirable sexual overtures and instructed her to maintain these actions quiet. Mr. Stringer has strenuously denied these claims, saying that they’d a consensual relationship that stretched over just a few months.

But he has faced increasing pressure this week, dropping the endorsement of a number of distinguished lawmakers who had supported his marketing campaign inside a day of Ms. Kim’s public assertion.

Jimmy Van Bramer, a Queens councilman who lower than per week in the past was giving impassioned remarks at a rally for Mr. Stringer, wrote on Twitter on Friday that he now not backed his candidacy.

The recent defections from the lawmakers could land as particularly private rebukes for Mr. Stringer, who had cultivated relationships with quite a lot of these Democrats for years, serving as a mentor to a number of of them and endorsing them early in aggressive campaigns. In flip, he relied on their endorsements to make the case that he, a profession politician with deep ties to New York political establishments, may be the candidate of the activist left.

Their departures unquestionably weaken Mr. Stringer’s candidacy, and a few on the left worry that Mr. Stringer’s stumbles will assist Andrew Yang, the previous presidential candidate, and Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, two extra centrist contenders within the race. Maya Wiley, a former counsel to Mayor Invoice de Blasio, has been competing for a number of the identical deeply progressive voters Mr. Stringer has sought, and a few political observers see a gap for her as effectively.

An individual conversant in the Working Households Social gathering’s determination mentioned its members felt Mr. Stringer was dismissive towards Ms. Kim and her account.

“We approached this second with the deliberate reflection, dialogue, and enter from members and leaders throughout the occasion that it required,” Sochie Nnaemeka, the occasion’s state director, mentioned in a press release. “Jean Kim shared her expertise of sexual assault and Scott Stringer did not acknowledge and take into account his duty for that hurt.”

Mr. Stringer, who has careworn a zero-tolerance coverage for sexual harassment and has mentioned he believes ladies need to be heard and handled respectfully, issued a pre-emptive assertion earlier Friday afternoon.

“I perceive that it is a tough second for my supporters, and I do know that a few of them will really feel compelled to withdraw their endorsement of my candidacy,” he mentioned. “This marketing campaign was at all times going to be concerning the folks. I’ve obtained quite a lot of help on marketing campaign stops over the past two days, and I’m going to be campaigning in each neighborhood, in each borough for the following two months.”

Definitely, Mr. Stringer stays effectively funded, and thus far nonetheless maintains help from main unions together with the United Federation of Academics, in addition to from officers like Consultant Jerrold Nadler.

The Working Households Social gathering had endorsed Dianne Morales, a former nonprofit government and maybe essentially the most left-wing candidate within the race, as its second alternative, and Ms. Wiley as its third alternative forward of the town’s ranked-choice mayoral election on June 22.

“We’re enthusiastically reiterating help for our different endorsed candidates, Dianne Morales and Maya Wiley,” the assertion mentioned. “The New York Working Households Social gathering might be forging ahead within the essential weeks forward to make sure considered one of these fearless, daring ladies is the following Mayor of New York.”

Social gathering leaders had a collection of tense calls over whether or not to rescind Mr. Stringer’s endorsement, and in the end the choice to take action got here down to a few components, in accordance with a member of the group who was not licensed to debate the deliberations.

There was a way that Mr. Stringer was too defensive in his response to the allegations, and didn’t acknowledge the facility imbalance he had with Ms. Kim; members felt he may now not win the mayor’s race; and there was a worry that if they didn’t rescind Mr. Stringer’s endorsement, ladies would now not really feel supported inside the group.

Whether or not Ms. Morales would now be handled as the primary alternative of the group was not clear Friday afternoon.

Dawn NYC, the New York chapter of the Dawn Motion, a youth-driven group targeted on local weather, additionally rescinded its endorsement of Mr. Stringer; it had beforehand co-endorsed Mr. Stringer and Ms. Morales.

“As of at the moment,” the group wrote on Twitter, “our sole endorsement for NYC Mayor is @Dianne4NYC.”

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